For most, the May long weekend marks the official start to summer. Understandably, dull browns are giving way to bright shades of green, the sun’s rays are getting hotter by the day, the water is just warm enough that under the right conditions you might jump in, and it’s a three day weekend! What more could you ask for after yet another long, cold winter and a wet spring? Bring on summer!
While I see why this long weekend marks the beginning of summer for many, it’s not for me! There is a different distinct moment; the moment that signals the end of winter and the start of something beautiful. My first paddle of the year!
This year, on a cool, grey morning with the rumbling of clouds threatening rain, I had that moment. I decided I wasn’t going to let Mother Nature or anything else ruin my excitement, I was going paddling!
This wasn’t just any paddle either, so my extreme excitement was warranted; I was headed on a creek run with Twiggy of Cruising Canoes. Creek runs are unique in that there is a very short window in which they are even possible. As the spring runoff raises the water levels, waterways that are naturally too shallow, narrow or have obstacles become viable routes for paddling. For a limited time, what is usually a babbling creek becomes rushing rapids, and inaccessible marshlands become calm lagoons of glasslike water.
So there we were, paddling down the river when we turned a bend, and the view before me opened up into what I can only describe as a magical water woodland. The forest floor was completely flooded and with fluid precision we could paddle among the trees. There is something to be said about exploring otherwise inaccessible land. I felt as though our journey transcended time and space, and I was an original voyageur, traversing this terrain for the very first time.
This was unlike any other kayak of my life. One I will not soon forget. A huge shout out and most sincere thank you to Twiggy; it was wonderful making memories with you!
I hope you all enjoy the start of your summer, whatever that may be.